Dispatch #57 January 28th 2020
Day 1177 Post-Ascendency of White Supremacy & Misogyny
Day 1103 Post-Installation of White-Supremacist-Misogynist-Pussy-Grabbing-Self-Aggrandizing-Demagogic-Bully-Illegitimate-PeeeOTUS & his White-Nationalist-Fascistic-Christian-Supremacist-Quislings
Just as structural white supremacy and misogyny depend upon making “others less than human”, same approach undergirds our imperial behaviors globally. We are obliged to create and communicate historically accurate narratives about these “others” as well as ourselves.
US leaders remain outraged about 444 days of 52 American hostages none of whom died. Since 1950, however, Iran has experienced repeated brutal imperial attacks by the US:
1953 – CIA & MI5 engineer a military coup that overthrows Iran’s democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh because Iran nationalized its oil industry.
1953 to 1979 – US installs Reza Shah Pahlavi who pursues 25 years of autocratic rule. Thousands of Iranians are killed by the brutal secret police Savak established/trained by the CIA and Mossad. When the Shah denationalizes Iran’s oil industry, 60% goes to US firms.
1979 – US-backed Shah of Iran exiled to US after widespread demonstrations and strikes.
1980 to 1988 – Iraq invades neighboring Iran with US approval and assistance. Eight-year-war kills hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and Iranians. Iran suffers heavy casualties from Iraq’s chemical weapons, largely provided by the US. In 1988, US warship mistakenly shoots down an Iranian passenger jet killing all 290 people aboard.
1994 to 2000 – President Clinton imposes severe sanctions on Iran for sponsorship of terrorism, pursuit of nuclear weapons, and hostility to Middle East peace process.
2002 – President Bush describes Iran as part of an “axis of evil” and accuses Iran of secretly developing nuclear weapons. US refuses to rule out the “military option” for Iran.
2003 to 2020 – Justified by lies to the UN, US invades Iraq in 2003 creating widespread upheaval. US troops remain in Iraq which shares a 900-mile border with Iran.
2005 to 2015 – US openly promotes regime change in Iran primarily through severe sanctions, AKA, “Iranian people will rise up again their leaders.” JCPOA is signed in 2015.
2018 – PeeeOTUS unilaterally withdraws from JCPOA and ramps up heavy sanctions.
2020 – US has about 54,000 troops and 7 military bases spread across 14 Middle Eastern/North African countries: Egypt, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Jordan, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Bahrain. http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2018/01/mil-180130-presstv02.htm US bases in Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, UAE and Saudi Arabia surround southern Iran. http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/interactive/2012/04/2012417131242767298.html Iran comprises a country and culture more than 2500 years old. US ignorance and arrogance are appalling. https://www.jadaliyya.com/Details/39946 https://ips-dc.org/americans-need-to-hear-more-from-iranians-heres-where-to-start/
Dr. Narges Bajoghli is an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies and a highly regarded resource on Iran. Listen to her on Democracy Now! and read her dispassionate and astute reflections in Foreign Policy. http://www.democracynow.org/2020/1/6/narges_bajoghli_qassem_soleimani_assassination_iran
Historically, the connections between Iran, Iraq, and the Levant go back generations. Long-standing trade and pilgrimage routes, as well as a constellation of religious seminaries, meant that communities and entire families seamlessly traveled, lived, conversed, and created cultural and social ties. The mere existence of these ties, however, does not translate into politically active groups. Policymakers and the public misunderstand the nature of these ties, explaining them as ones bound by Shiism as a traditional, religious doctrine. This misunderstanding arises from a fundamentally flawed framework that undergirds Washington’s entire Iran and Middle East policy—a belief that what drove the 1979 revolution in Iran was a fanatical quest for Islamic politics. But what actually binds these groups together is not an adherence to specific theological doctrine—if that were the case, Iran would not have close relationships with certain Palestinian factions, nor with Iraqi Kurdish groups, to say nothing of ties to Bashar al-Assad in Syria or the Houthis in Yemen. In order to understand how a political quest for sovereignty, rather than an otherworldly quest for religious rule, animates Iran’s relations with its proxies, it is first necessary to unpack current assumptions about the revolution that led to the Islamic Republic. In a newly emerging generation of scholarship aimed at constructing a social history of the revolution, research shows that what motivated Iranians to support the revolution en masse was a desire to rid the country of imperialism. As a prominent historian of Iran, Ervand Abrahamian has argued that the 1979 revolution should be seen as a continuation of the national struggle for liberation that was cut short in 1953 by a U.S.-orchestrated-coup. As the historian Naghmeh Sohrabi argues, the 1979 revolution in Iran should be understood “as one of the last great successful revolutions of the post-colonial world and in its post-revolutionary shape, as one of the first to answer the questions and anxieties of its global south ethos in an Islamic form.” Excerpted from foreignpolicy.com/2019/05/15/the-hidden-sources-of-iranian-strength/
And for more realpolitik perspective, learn about how US and Soleimani were allies in the fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan and ISIS in Iraq. http://www.democracynow.org/2020/1/9/andrew_bacevich_trump_iran